Op-Ed: The Donald trumps Washington and Biden doesn’t get it

Op-Ed: The Donald trumps Washington and Biden doesn’t get it

Joe Biden could easily have run for president. Instead, we have a campaign that doesn’t understand the world around it or how to make the most of their most accomplished candidate. By JAMES CANNON BOYCE.

The news that Joe Biden has decided not to run is not good for two reasons. One, is that while you would think the Clinton campaign would have the self-awareness to take a step back and be thankful for the bullet dodged, they have reacted it seems more with their patented knee-jerk push back on Biden’s comments and continue to forge straight ahead with their antiquated campaign and branding strategies which will most certainly fail.

Biden’s hastily-convened news conference was not a good moment for him and certainly not the dignified exit from the public stage that would have been nice for a man with almost 50 years of public service.

Watch: Joe Biden Announces He Will Not Run For President

His excuse that there simply wasn’t enough time is total crap and the same inside-the-beltway ‘wisdom’ that led Al Gore to defeat John Kerry, and it is not helping Hillary Clinton.

Here’s how people inside the beltway in Washington judged Biden:

Hillary has raised $77-million so far. Poor Joe can’t raise that.

Hillary has spent millions (tens of millions?) on television. Poor Joe can’t do that.

Hillary has the ground game in New Hampshire and Iowa. Poor Joe will never catch up.

The money is the big thing because if Biden can’t raise the big money, his high-priced Washington consultants can’t get paid the big money.

Biden (and many others) clearly thinks he would be a better candidate. He also firmly believes that Cinton is not the one to carry forth what he and Barack Obama started?—?but it’s all about the money. It’s all about getting the checks in the door so the checks can go out the door?—?if Biden can’t raise $20-million right now, he can’t compete.

Clinton has raised $77-million in total and spent?—?so far?—?a shocking:

$32,000,000? —? yes that’s — $32-MILLION. That is an insane amount of money.

Where is it all going? People point to the 70 plus people on the ground in early primary states. If they are getting $5,000 a month each, that’s $350,000 per month?—?so it’s not going there. The money is going to consultants for polling to tell them crap they should already know and bad television spots that tell voters bull shit they don’t believe.

Clinton should be able to run without running a single television spot and Biden would have been able to as well.

Once upon a time, television worked for political candidates. Maybe once upon a time direct mail did as well. Some television (and maybe some direct mail but I doubt it) might prove effective now but it’s not how brands are created anymore?—?and it certainly is not how politicians are elected.

DC consultants think this is DEAD WRONG.

You have to run TV. and then you run at huge high-point levels on the evening news. You do brilliant strategy like have Jeb Bush’s commercials end with ‘Jeb’ and not Bush because that’s going to make voters forget his last name?

DC likes television because of the 8% commissions the consultants make and the millions they charge to produce crap television. Many, including me, used to think the trick was to make better commercials and the ones that are made certainly should be better.

But the real trick is to realise that Biden and other candidates are getting a false choice. And the proof is the second thing that is not great about Biden stepping down?—?Donald Trump.

Trump is winning my fellow Americans, on many levels for many reasons.

First, he is winning because he has used the presidential campaign to increase the value of his brand by billions. Billions. I thought, to be honest, that that was all he was going to do?—?and my 16-year-old son disagreed, and he is going to be right.

I think that might be what The Donald thought in the beginning and, according to some mutual friends, he is more surprised than anyone about where he is and that the White House is actually a potential reality (show) for him.

Trump is many things some of which are not overly attractive to many Americans but he is not an idiot.

Google ‘donald trump presidential campaign commercials’ and you get Jimmy Kimmel’s fake commercial, which sadly looks like most of the DC commercials you see.

So let’s go back to the numbers.

Clinton raised $77,000,000 and spent $44,000,000 (while claiming to be frugal and print all campaign documents double sided?).

Bernie Sanders, raised $41,000,000 and spent $14,000,000 (still a lot of money).

Trump raised $7,300,000 including approximately $2,000,000 of his own money (and who has the best numbers?).

Well wait a minute.

How can Trump be so far ahead? He’s not running millions of dollars in campaign commercials? He’s not doing all the things he is supposed to be doing?

Trump is ahead in the polls, I would argue, because he is running the campaign any businessman would run. And it’s making a mockery of Washington and the press geniuses.

This is an actual quote from Wednesday’s USA Today:

Democratic pollster Margie Omero agreed: “People rejoiced in the last few weeks, thinking Trump’s numbers have faltered but they’ve rebounded some. It seems he stays strong no matter what the press says.”

There is so much wrong here I can’t even tell you.

First, it presumes that the press makes the candidate, and that the voters will do what the press says (and by press she means mainstream Washington journalists who read newspapers not great sites like Medium or The Huffington Post).

Second, she implies that voters are morons?—?children who can’t make up their own minds?—?the patronising media types in Washington need to explain it.

Third, she doesn’t understand the world around her?—?not one bit. Brands are created outside-in in the modern world with 365/24/7 access to information. Consumers make the choices from the outside?—?brands can steer perhaps a bit from the inside but consumers/voters form their own opinions.

So, Americans know that Trump is a bit of a windbag with a haircut I expect to see as a top-selling Halloween costume. They get that he says stupid things and doesn’t know all the Middle East factions?—?but they also know he is absolutely right about the bullshit of George W Bush keeping us safe as president (and no Democrat had the balls to say that in 14 years mind you). Trump is also right in many ways about China?—?and he’s not running stupid television commercials to try to make himself something he is not.

Biden easily could have run. And I think won both the nomination and the White House. Instead, we have a campaign that doesn’t understand the world around it or how to make the most of their most accomplished candidate. We have Sanders, the world’s most famous and perhaps only progressive socialist Jewish politician?—?certainly the only one running for major office right now.

And we have Trump who looks at how campaigns are run and thinks: you people are idiots.

And he’s right. DM

Photo: Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks at his tax plan press conference in New York, New York, USA, 28 September 2015. Trump is one of 14 republican candidates running for the US presidency. EPA/PETER FOLEY.


Please peer review 3 community comments before your comment can be posted

We would like our readers to start paying for Daily Maverick...

…but we are not going to force you to. Over 10 million users come to us each month for the news. We have not put it behind a paywall because the truth should not be a luxury.

Instead we ask our readers who can afford to contribute, even a small amount each month, to do so.

If you appreciate it and want to see us keep going then please consider contributing whatever you can.

Support Daily Maverick→
Payment options

Become a Maverick Insider

This could have been a paywall

On another site this would have been a paywall. Maverick Insider keeps our content free for all.

Become an Insider
Daily Maverick Elections Toolbox

Download the Daily Maverick Elections Toolbox.

+ Your election day questions answered
+ What's different this election
+ Test yourself! Take the quiz